024/18 – Firebowl Chicken:
My wife bought me an Indian Firebowl for Christmas. What a great present! I had been after one for a while so was made up when I opened it on Christmas Day! I have been meaning to cook on it for a while but this was the first cook, I thought I would go for something quite simple to start with – Firebowl Chicken.
Mine is a 70cm recycled firebowl on low stand with grill from The Indian Firebowl Company. I also got the tripod and kadai set, shovel, marshmallow fork, tongs, cover and grill lifter. So cool! Other Indian Firebowls are available, they all look pretty much the same to me.
Another top quality chicken from Gartmorn Farm – £12 for 2.3kg: More details on their slow grown chicken in the last cook:
I put some foil in the base of the firebowl to stop any liquid dropping out the drain and onto my new patio! On top of this I placed some fire bricks I got from Amazon – £18 for 6. I lit a flamefast instant log then placed kindling and oak logs on top. I got the oak logs from a local supplier, they have a decent range of wood types available so I will buy a bag of each to test them all. The Oak smelt fantastic!The chicken was covered with Hang Fire all purpose rub which I had left over from a previous cook:
I left the fire to settle down a bit then placed the tripod on top of the firebowl. Next I pushed a hook through the chicken and hung it over the fire, I kept it fairly high (60cm) initially as I didn’t want to burn it. Just spotted the axe in the background. Owning a firebowl is a good excuse to own a big axe, you have to chop wood right?! I kept the fire topped up with logs, trying to keep a nice steady heat without loads of flames lapping the meat and burning it. This let me drop the height of the chicken to speed the cook up a bit.It was nice sitting outside by the firebowl keeping warm from the fire. The smell of the Oak was cracking. The flames were quite mesmerising!
This photo doesn’t show it but I flipped the chicken round and hung it upside down to try and cook the meat evenly. It was too dark to get photos outside after that one. I sat outside with my daughters for a while and we toasted marshmallows whilst the chicken cooked. It was really cold out but the fire kept us all nice and warm. Really nice to sit outside round the fire and chat to the kids, will need to do that more often!
Time to Eat:
The chicken had been cooking for close to 4 hours when I took it off, it was probing all different temperatures all over the bird but most of it was 60c or above so I was happy to start eating!
Some great colour from the rub, fire and the smoke from the Oak. Plenty of juice coming out of the bird again.
A really difficult cook this one, first time on the fire bowl and I had no clue what I was doing! Hard to cook the meat evenly but it did taste really nice, the smoke from cooking directly over oak was unreal. I haven’t managed to cook anything with a similar flavour profile in the grill so far. I am looking forward to cooking more food over live fire and I will hopefully learn along the way how to manage the fire and cook properly!
It’s been interesting cooking on something new, my mind has been buzzing since the cook trying to think if I should have managed the fire differently, placed the logs differently, hung the chicken differently, did the cold weather affect things and make it harder? (on the last question, I had a chat with Marcus and he did say colder weather makes it harder on a firebowl which obviously reduces my opportunities to cook outside in Scotland!)
Good fun, enjoyed the challenge and it was really nice just sitting outside and switching off for a bit watching the fire. I will need to do that more often.
|4/5 (through my lack of skill!)
|1: Manage the fire better
2: Work on cook heights and rotations
3: Cook when it’s warmer!